One Summer in Damak

One of my final projects at my field placement with the Center for New North Carolinians (CNNC) was to coordinate a photo exhibit of Bhutanese refugee camps. Saturday, March 30, the CNNC held an open house for the community to view a photo exhibit demonstrating life for Bhutanese refugees in Nepal. The exhibit, “One Summer in Damak”, was put together from photos that were shot by students in Duke University’s Kenan Institute for Ethics (KIE).ImageImage

Visitors from Greensboro came, as well as students from KIE and many Bhutanese refugees from Durham, Raleigh and Greensboro, totaling roughly 120 attendees. It was a happy occasion and the atmosphere felt like a family reunion. A large number of the adults who came from Raleigh were senior citizens who rarely had the chance to attend events. They reminisced over the memories that the images evoked and Bhutanese children from the Triad quickly made friends with those from the Triangle, eager to “add” each other on Facebook. Two men recognized a friend in one of the photos. They realized that that particular camp was no longer in existence and that that friend was now resettled in New York.

The beauty of the day was in the fact that for a short time, the Bhutanese were the majority and the locals were the minority. For the day, they were free to dress, speak, and act comfortably in their native manner, a rare joy in their host country.


About Liz Leon

After attending UNCG for my BSW and spending some time in the field, I am excited to be part of the Advanced Standing MSW class of 2013. My concentration is Community, Management and Policy Practice and I am doing my internship in Greensboro, working with refugees and immigrants. Besides academics, I always make time for the extracurriculars and enjoy just about anything as long as it involves my favorite people. Please don't hesitate to contact me at if you have any questions about the Advanced Standing Program or UNC's School of Social Work in general.
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